Hot Shooting, Stellar Defense Propel GSW To 64-54 Victory

AMERICUS - The Georgia Southwestern men's basketball team shot a sizzling 69 percent from inside the arc while holding Lander to their season-low point total in a 64-54 victory at the Storm Dome Wednesday evening.

The Hurricanes snap a five-game losing skid and improve to 8-11 overall and 4-8 in Peach Belt Conference play. Lander has lost seven in a row and dips to 6-11, 1-9 in the PBC.

Jamon Hawkins scored the first six points of the game for GSW and helped take the lead away from Lander for the final time of the evening with 17:01 left in the first half when his layup made the score 6-4.

The Hurricanes proceeded to utilize a 16-2 run to open a 12-point advantage (18-6). The Bearcats were held scoreless for more than five minutes during that run.

GSW eventually opened its largest lead of the first half, 13 points, when Hawkins hit a jumper with nine minutes left to make the score 22-9. The Hurricanes took a 30-22 lead into the break.

With five unanswered points to start the second period, GSW quickly pushed the margin back to 13 points. The Hurricanes would hit that mark one more time when Alan Arnett sank a 3-point bucket at the 12:17 mark to make the score 50-37.

The Bearcats pulled within six points with just under three minutes remaining, but that's as close they would get and the Hurricanes improve to 7-3 when leading at the half this season.

GSW held a substantial rebounding edge, 38-24, and controlled points in the paint, 28-8. In addition to shooting well from the field (55 percent overall), GSW was solid from the charity stripe, connecting on 16 of 20 attempts (80 percent).

The Hurricanes held Lander to 32 percent shooting and the Bearcats leading scorer, David Pruett, was held scoreless. He entered the matchup ranked fifth in scoring average in the PBC. Jareal Smith finished with a team-high 13 points for Lander.

Hawkins led the Hurricanes with 17 points on 5 of 8 shooting. He was perfect from the free throw line, connecting on all six attempts. Matt Shaw added 12 points. Daryl Davis pulled down a season-high nine rebounds.

GSW returns to the hardwood on Saturday with a 3:30 p.m. contest at Young Harris.